Sump Pump Selection: Things To Know

Comparing 4 Common Methods Of Drain Cleaning

Have you ever experienced a clogged drain? Unless you've been unbelievably lucky, you can almost certainly answer that question with a resounding "yes!" There are plenty of options for cleaning your drains, but do they all work equally well? Unfortunately, the answer to that question is an equally clear "no."

If you aren't sure when certain methods may be appropriate, this guide will help get you started. Below you will find four common drain cleaning methods, how they compare to each other, and the best circumstances for each.

1. Chemical Drain Cleaners 

Chemical drain cleaners are often the first go-to method for do-it-yourselfers since they're relatively inexpensive and easy to use. However, there are significant drawbacks to these cleaners. Not only do they contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can be potentially harmful to breathe, but they're also dangerous to your skin and damaging to your plumbing.

Even worse, they aren't always effective. When these cleaners fail, they can cause a mix of chemicals and water to back up into your sink, worsening the problem. While they might be okay to use once or twice, you should avoid regularly cleaning your drains with these products.

2. Plungers, Closet Augers, and Mini Drain Snakes

These tools are relatively inexpensive options available to most homeowners. They work best at clearing minor clogs, such as those that form in toilet traps or the branch drain lines in bathrooms or kitchens. Every homeowner should have these tools in their arsenal since they're a good first step for addressing clogs and much safer than chemical cleaners.

Unfortunately, typical do-it-yourself quality tools often can't deal with trickier clogs. Blockages deeper in your plumbing or in your sewer will require more intensive cleaning methods.

3. Professional Drain Cleaning Augers and Snakes

Professional-grade tools are more than just heavy-duty versions of the tools you have in your closet. Plumbers typically use drum-style drain cleaning augers or snakes that can reach farther into your drains. These tools often have numerous heads and attachments that allow them to tackle various problems, making them far more versatile.

If you have a stubborn clog that you can't break up or even reach with simple hand tools, you'll want to call in a plumber with heavier equipment. In most cases, nothing else will be necessary to get your drains running smoothly again.

4. Hydro Jetting Equipment

When all else fails, hydro jetting equipment is the heavy artillery of the plumbing world. These tools use high-intensity water streams to annihilate and flush away blockages. Hydro jetting is often far more successful than other methods for tough blockages because it can both break up obstructions and thoroughly clean pipe walls.

Most plumbers won't start by hydro jetting your drains since the equipment takes more time and effort to set up and use, but it's an excellent option for sewer blockages and other tough problems. 

Contact residential drain cleaning services to find out more.